Black Woman, When Love Hurts.
(ThyBlackMan.com) As little girls we all dream of the house, husband and picket white fence. We have that vision emblazed in our minds and we hold on to it well into our adult lives. Living, each day praying and hoping that true love comes. And for many of us true love or what think is love period can prove to be deadly.
I can remember like yesterday the very first time he hit me. I cried and was deeply hurt I couldn’t believe some one who I loved and said they loved me had struck me with such violence and force my mouth began to bleed profusely. He didn’t bat an eye as he walked out the front door securing the key to the deadbolt he locked me in with no way out. I was three months pregnant. Hurt and confused I laid there for hours in the dark crying and trying to make some sense out what had just happened. There was none to be made.
When he returned a few hours later he was so sweet, caring and apologetic. He kissed my bruised mouth and promised to never hit me again. That was a promise he would break numerous times during the course of our relationship. I should have taken my son and left but I wanted to believe him and keep our family together. I didn’t want to be another statistic a single black woman with two kids and no man so I stayed.
I would live in fear of a man who said he loved me for more than a decade. The beatings would become worst and more frequent. I would become an investor In Fashion Fair Cosmetics buying concealor and foundation to hide the black eyes and bruises that came along with the beatings. I would tell no one of the abuse I was receiving at home. Yet, my friends, family and co-workers knew. What I thought was a secret was knowledge. I was a battered woman.
I found myself alone and depressed, and pregnant again. Outside of the children and work I had nothing else. I became despondent not living but merely existing going thru the motions and feeling trapped in an abusive relationship. How could you be in a relationship and still feel alone? Wasn’t he supposed to be the one I could go to? No one to talk to and nowhere to turn. I couldn’t tell my friends that at night I became a punching bag. I gained a tremendous amount of weight as food became my comfort and was ridiculed for such. This I would later find out would be his reason for cheating. I was fat and undesirable.
Not only would I endure beatings and verbal abuse there was the womanizing and the accusation of outside children. There were women, calling our home with animosity and blatant disrespect. Many times they wouldn’t wait to make sure it was me who answered the phone and cuss one of our daughters out. I would then resort to violence protecting what I said was my home, but I knew deep inside I was fighting for a man who clearly meant me no good.
I think about it now and I think the thing that hurt the most was his family condoned such behavior and even protected his infidelities using the excuse it was not their business. But, how could it not be when our children were suffering? I was wearing down, finally! Enough had become enough.
I started planning how I would leave, I was officially done! I began going to bed fully dressed, the thought of him touching me sickened me. I began to fight back with ferocity of a caged lion, it became clear to me if I stayed one of us would die and I was determined for it not to be me. I took my three kids and left vowing to never be in that situation again. I lied.
After being away from him for a year and getting back what I thought was my life I took him back. But, this time it would be me who would cheat. I clearly didn’t love him anymore, but wanted the children to have their father.
Then I met a man who gave me hope again. He told me I was beautiful just as I was. He gave me back my confidence and self esteem. Something I had allowed my ex to beat out of me. He gave me the strength and the courage to walk away for good. He gave me back me!
I sit here now and reflect back on that time in my life. It was a dark place full of despair and hopelessness. I was in love with a man who didn’t know how to love me. I gave him everything and asked for nothing but love in return. When I left him after thirteen years of abuse I was what I fought so hard not to be, single, black with three children and no man. Today I am a vibrant secure woman looking back on my life and celebrating because of who I was I am who I am today. What I experienced taught me if he hits you once he will hit you again. It’s a vicious cycle often ending in death. If he hits you he doesn’t love you, because love doesn’t hurt.
Staff Writer; Camilla Denise Barton
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